Bon Voyage CTE
After several cases of mistaken identity, the directors of Australian based travel company Cruise Tour Escapes (CTE) decided it was time for a name change.
The mistaken identity was a simple error to make when visiting the company website and the name change will alleviate any confusion.
Bob Wood Cruise Group directors Tyler Wood and Jay Mckenzie created the new tour company bringing in U.S based business partner Mark Alfano. Together the trio produced a new and innovative range of travel products. It was all very exciting, but it came with a catch.

A new company with a very exciting direction

A new company with a very exciting direction

Wood said, “The problem was that our parent company has had such a long and hugely successful relationship with the cruise industry, that people automatically connected CTE with cruising. That’s great and we’re happy to help customers with their cruising arrangements, but it’s not what the new operation is about … far from it!”
The team got their heads together and discussed what the real focus is.
Wood believes the answer, and new name, was right in front of them all the time but they just couldn’t immediately see it.
“The three of us, with more than 70 years combined travel industry experience, sat down and asked who are we and what does our company excel at? It was one of those ‘lightbulb’ moments, it really was. It was simple and staring us in the face all the time, but sometimes you can’t see the woods for the trees!
We reviewed the first couple of products we’d developed, and the answer was there, pure and simple.
It was blindingly obvious. What we do is specialise in worldwide tour experiences.”
The old CTE instantly became Global Tour Specialists (GTS).
Although Wood adds, “The cruise industry isn’t entirely forgotten.”

The Vision – Get Real!
Establishing the new name was a matter of the directors simply ‘getting real’ about what they are doing and where they are heading. As it turned out, while they focused on what they were doing, it also became apparent that they are offering real travel experiences.
Global Tour Specialists’ first product ‘Escape – Canadian Rockies’, is introducing Australians to the Canadian Rockies, like they’ve never been seen before.
Before you yawn and say “Yeah that’s what they all say” Tyler Wood is very passionate about GTS’s new North American offerings and guarantees they’re not like anything else available.
“When I travel, I like to hunt out those places where the locals shop, eat, drink and live their everyday lives, and that’s how we have constructed our itineraries.
A typical tour day starts with real coffee or breakfast in a local café or coffee shop followed by stops at places like local breweries or markets. However we don’t miss the popular tourist stops either. We just offer them with a bit of a twist”, he said.
An example is everyone wants to see the giant cedars that The Rockies are famous for.
“The way we do it is we don’t just admire them from a distance, we enjoy a gourmet picnic right in the middle of them. It’s something people will remember forever.”
Tyler Wood knows it’s possibly the biggest cliché in everyone’s travel diary, but it’s true, and GTS’s vision is perfectly summed up by the famous Ralph Waldo Emmerson quote “Life is a journey, not a destination.”
Wood says, “Another feature we’ve worked hard on is our high quality accommodation every night, again our point of difference is unlike the large corporate providers where a package tour is forced to meet in the hotel’s dining room at a certain time for meals, we’ve broken away from the herd mentality. Our quality accommodation providers don’t force us to use their restaurants, which means our travellers can get out and explore their surrounds, dining at local cafes or restaurants.”
But people won’t be left to just fend for themselves.
Tyler Wood says, “Our tour guides are locals, they know the lay of the land, so if travellers feel like eating different cuisine each night they can get advice on what’s available at each destination from the locals. Again, if room service is all someone feels like, that can be arranged too. It’s all easy and completely flexible.”

Cruise Industry not Forgotten
The cruise industry hasn’t been ignored by Global Tour Specialists, in fact they fit hand in glove.
Tyler Wood says, “Another unique feature of our Canadian Rockies tours is that they are worked to end in Vancouver on a Friday allowing travellers to seamlessly book on any Saturday or Sunday Vancouver or Seattle/Alaska cruise voyage.”

The future and Beyond
The future for Global Tour Specialists is one of endless opportunity and it’s not only Canada the company is focusing on with new and exciting itineraries being created all the time.
Explore Australia is a unique product providing out of the box experiences, taking in all the Aussie icons whilst getting out and mixing with locals.
Tyler Wood says, “We provide the personal experiences that create lifelong memories, from a beachside lunch with a beer at a surf club, to a backstreet walking tour in Melbourne or even sipping champagne in The Outback. As a market leader we love to show off our sunburnt country. Our company’s roots lie in Australian tourism and for more than 20 years we have provided thousands of international guests with affordable, bespoke itineraries traveling to highly sought after Australian destinations.”
Global Tour Specialists intrinsically know the sought after destinations such as iconic Sydney, Ayers Rock, World Heritage Kakadu National Park, the tropical North including Cairns and Port Douglas, sunny Brisbane and the Gold Coast, and the cosmopolitan city of Melbourne.
Wood says, “With a dedicated team of experts continually researching new products and new destinations GTS thrives on creating cutting edge programs for international guests”.
Years as the leading provider of bespoke travel packages designed specifically for the international market means Global Tour Specialists is confident that the team not only understand all requirements, they will exceed expectations. Long term partnerships with suppliers allow the company to offer the greatest flexibility of options, at the industry’s most affordable prices.
GTS is also proud to be affiliated with the only company in Australia that sources and trains specialised tour guides, providing the best trained and most knowledgeable tour leaders in the country.
Tyler Wood is enthusiastic about GTS’s other new and evolving products – Energise in New Zealand and Embrace Papua New Guinea.
The opportunities are endless and as a company, Global Tour Specialists is dedicated to creating memories out of dreams.